The Dangerous Side Of Sharks Essay

The Dangerous Side Of Sharks Essay

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The scene is a familiar one. Peaceful beachgoers splashing around in the water unaware of the monstrous danger that lurks beneath. The suspenseful music reaches a climax and an unfortunate victim is suddenly dragged underwater leaving behind a bloody trail. The summer blockbuster hit, Jaws, sparked a vilification of sharks that has spread throughout the world. Following Jaws, sharks fell victim to the stereotype of the horrendous man-eating creatures which needed to be annihilated. Because of public opinion on sharks, the hunting and finning of sharks has gone unnoticed for years, becoming a significant problem in our oceans.
Without a doubt sharks can be ferocious and frightening creatures. Regarded as one of the ocean’s top predators, these creatures have always been viewed with fear. However, no matter how negatively portrayed, sharks mistakenly kill an average of five humans annually compared to 35 humans killed by dogs every year (Mother Nature Network). Statistically, you have a 1 in 84 chance of dying from a car crash compared to the 1 in 3,700,000 chance of being killed from a shark attack (Human Shark Bait). In reality sharks are one of the most misunderstood creatures on the planet. However, humans continue to declare them as murderers. The result is that people are blinded to the atrocities performed on sharks and are less likely to know about the dangers facing sharks today.
Within the past fifty years, the slaughter of sharks has risen 400 percent (Sea Shepherd). This translates to an estimated 100 million sharks that are fished per year (Predators as Prey). According to the World Conservation Union’s Red List of Threatened Species, sharks are now the largest group of endangered marine life (Predators as Prey). Th...

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...a living reef shark can provide over $200,000 in its lifetime. Many countries and thousands of jobs depend upon shark ecotourism as a significant portion of their revenue. When the shark population thrives, ecotourism flourishes and globally generates hundreds of millions of dollars.
Sharks are magical and misunderstood creatures. They induce fear, they are relentlessly hunted, and they are essential to ecosystems. As fishermen reel in millions of sharks every year, nothing is done to protect these apex predators. The phobia of sharks created from media hype has lead us to coin phrases like, “the only good shark is a dead shark.” This mind set is far from the truth as sharks play a vital role in keeping marine ecosystems balanced and providing a greater source of income alive than dead. Instead of fearing sharks, the world should really fear a world without sharks.

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